One of my favorite cookbooks on my bookshelf is titled “Plenty” by Chef Yotam Ottolenghi. I was first drawn to it by the beautiful photography but after thumbing through the pages I soon realized that the holistic nature of the foods he prepares is in exact keeping with how I want to eat and how I want to feed my family. The recipe I’m making today is a slightly altered one that he and Chef Sami Tamimi prepared together for a 2014 bon appétit feature. I now have three of his cookbooks and have made many of his dishes. Yotam seems to be a master at catching food at the peak of it’s season and highlighting the natural flavors to bring out the best in its natural simplicity. This Fried Eggplant, Tomato and Cucumber Salad is one of our new favorites. (more…)

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Be ready for any occasion with a few simple ingredients that will make an instant festive summer cocktail.  There’s something about sunny days  that screams for light, refreshing, and fruity.  Summertime brings an abundance of color everywhere.  One of my favorite summer errands is a trip to the farm stand. I’m a farm stand junkie, I just want to bring everything home. If I don’t stay focused I’ll end up bringing home a crazy collection of foods. I wish we had farm stands year round.  (more…)

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Because we can never have too many treats in our lives, icecream lovers take note!  It’s milkshake season! Sure, I made it up but who’s going to argue? I’m making milk shakes. Not just any runny, processed, fast food, milk shakes, but thick, decadent whole food ingredient shakes.  This month my son Paul had surgery to have his tonsils removed. I kept him comfortable with as many smooth, creamy, cold concoctions as possible.

There are soooooo many combinations. Salted caramel, Oreo Cheesecake, Captain Crunch …yes it’s good!  How about a Pecan Pie Bourbon Milkshake?  I’ve got the recipe HERE.

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 I’m an East coast girl.  Actually I’m happy on any coast but most of my time has been spent in the East.  Oysters are one of my favorite foods.  Until now it has been a food I only order out.  Heinen’s always has a beautiful selection of fresh oysters tempting me every time I order fish.  I finally decided to educate myself and learn to open or “shuck” my own oysters. It’s easier than I thought! You can do it too!  Have you tried shucking oysters! I feel pretty invincible now, or at least slightly dangerous! (more…)

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Smokey and sweet blackened salmon pairs beautifully with protein-charged quinoa and earthy kale.  Topped with fruit, seeds and avocados, these nutrient-packed bowls are a part of our regular meal line up. The colors alone make this dish fun but when you taste the combo of sweet smokey (not too spicy) salmon with the fresh sweet blueberries, chewy golden raisins, crunchy sweet pomegranate arils and creamy, cool yogurt and avocado all elevated by the tangy and sweet dressing and tender kale you’ll wish you made twice as much. It may seem like the quinoa is just along for the ride but it actually Quinoa, pronounced ‘keen-wa’ is among the least allergenic of all the grains, making it a fantastic wheat-free choice.

Cooked quinoa seeds become fluffy and creamy, yet maintains a slight crunch. It has a delicate and subtly nutty flavor, versatile for breakfast (as a cereal), lunch (as a salad) or dinner (as a side).

What’s all the quinoa hype about? It’s high in anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, which make it potentially beneficial for health in the prevention and treatment of disease. Quinoa contains heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids and, quinoa contains all nine essential amino acids. And, bonus, it’s EASY to make!!

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